Barcelona's Famous La Masia Academy 'Is Sick'
Barcelona are famous for producing youth products who go on to play for their first team through their academy La Masia, however right now things aren't good at the famous academy.
The names just roll off the tongue, Lionel Messi, Xavi, Andres Iniesta, Carles Puyol, Gerard Pique, Sergio Busquets, Pedro and Victor Valdes. Not only is it naming the spine of Pep Guardiola's treble winning Barcelona team but it's also a group of players all created by Barca's La Masia academy.
Barcelona are rightly proud of their academy that had produced some of the best players in their history but it's not done that for a while now and, writing for Ara, journalist Xavi Torres has explained why La Masia is 'sick.'
Club Josep Maria Bartomeu started a new 'La Masia 360'' strategy to turn things around but it's been a failure with Bartomeu appointing the wrong people and wasting the money for the project.
Masia director Pep Segura wasn't happy with the appointment of Albert Soler to oversee the project and they have had disagreements.
There's also been €900,000 spent on a comprehensive psychological service for the players through Eduvic, a social initiative cooperative with more than 20 years of experience, but players haven't really embraced it and just give answers to get out of their sessions quickly.
As for the facilities, some of the rooms have been changed into offices to accommodate office staff rather than the players and the academy players have even lost a room where they could analyse football to an office.
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The additions in club staff comes at the expense of the kids. On the ground floor, for example, an audiovisual room where the kids spent their free time by watching football and played video games together has, among other similar rooms, turned into offices.... pic.twitter.com/RF4h1vNFoT- Navid Molaaghaei (@navidjaaan) June 24, 2019
The amount of youth products at La Masia has reduced to with many of those staying at the academy now being loanees.
Those that are living at the academy aren't even being fed properly with the food falling below the lowest nutritional standard.
And to make things even worse the latest coaches incharge of the youth products reportedly don't understand the Barcelona DNA.
In other words: the coaches brought in, who are supposed to carry the Barça way, Barça DNA, Cruyff's philosophy, whatever you wanna call it, DO NOT LEARN these things. This is how you slowly destroy a club and its philosophy from within.- Navid Molaaghaei (@navidjaaan) June 24, 2019
Sergi Roberto is the player who has recently moved up from the academy to become a member of the first team but the Spaniard became a member of the first team in 2013.
That means it's been six years since anyone really broke through, and by the sounds of things it could be even longer.